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Jeff Werner

Designer in Vancouver, Canada. Secretary of the 221A Artist Run Centre, member of Fieldwork design collective, and former exhibit designer at the Beaty Biodiversity Museum and the Vancouver Aquarium. Graduate of Emily Carr and University of Victoria, and worked in the Philippines, Indonesia and the Netherlands. Cycling advocate and race on the Garneau Evolution team.

canada design film victoria Food Goods and Services, June 2, 2004 11:17 AM 81 comments

Weber Charcoal BBQ Grill review

A review of why I bought a charcoal grill and a Weber model specifically, what I use with it, how I use it, what I think of it and the Weber brand overall, and questions I have about it and charcoal grilling in general.

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I recently bought a made-in-USA, Weber 18.5" One-Touch Silver charcoal grill. It's what we laymen know as an old-fashioned BBQ, a spheroid hibachi with tripod legs. It doesn't use propane; only charcoal. I am a complete novice griller. The following outlines why I bought the Weber, the accessories I purchased for it (all prices CDN, before taxes), how I use the Weber, and what my overall impressions of it and charcoal grilling are.

Why I bought a Weber charcoal grill:

I live in a small, 1st floor bachelor suite on a hilltop in Victoria, BC, Canada. My landlady built a large, brand-new deck with a spectacular view, of which I get nearly sole access to. I wanted a BBQ (which I quickly learned is really a term reserved for slow, indirect-heat cooking units; what most of us want and use is a grill) for the summer of 2004 to entertain friends on said deck, and to learn and enjoy some good meat grilling.

After some basic research comparing gas to charcoal, I decided to buy a charcoal grill for the following reasons, in order of most important to least:

  1. I didn't want a large, un-portable grill. The generally smaller charcoal units are easier to transport and pack up should I have to move;
  2. I didn't want to spend a lot of money
  3. Simplicity of design and extra style points for grilling the "old fashioned" way;
  4. Save money on buying small, disposable propane tanks for small gas grills;
  5. Better taste.

I specifically bought the Weber because:

  1. Canadian Tire only had cheap charcoal grills or cheap to expensive gas ones;
  2. Only Capital Iron---a pretty unique store where the service is OK---had a large selection of both charcoal and gas grills, including the stylish-looking Weber line;
  3. I read up on Webers online (at both the company website and a few sites and forums on gas vs. charcoal and reviews of Weber in particular). The Weber has the range of models I was interested in and the quality that would hopefully last me years;
  4. I then debated over purchasing the 18.5", tripod-legged charcoal Weber over the smaller, table-top Smokey Joe Weber and went for the former because I don't own an outdoor table to place the small version on and I want to entertain groups larger than say, 4 people. I purchased the 18.5" Weber for $119 (a rather high price as it turns out) at Capital Iron in Victoria. Go big or go home, right?

Accessories for the grill:

Locktong.gif Tongs: for flipping/moving items on the grill and arranging briquettes. I read in a number of places NOT to use a prong or large fork for flipping meat, as this needlessly pierces it, releasing precious juices and flavour. The Paderno prices also reflect Capital Iron's 15% off sale and the brand is pretty stylish. There was a BBQ-labelled version of the tongs, with angled grabbing tips and plastic-covered handle, but it didn't look as elegant as the all-steel ones.

BBQ_Turner.jpg
Turner: though seemingly less useful than tongs, it has actually proven more convenient for flipping large or somewhat irregular-shaped items. During my third outing with the Weber (my third as a grilling cook, period) the turner also came in handy as the dedicated meat-handler, while the tongs I reserved for handling the veggie items, as a courtesy to my casually-vegetarian friends.

products_bag_1.jpg Fire starters: I was warned lighting charcoal would be a pain. Capital Iron attempted to sell me a starter chimney, a simple cylinder in which you light the briquettes and, when they're ready, release into the grill. I declined such a superfluous accessory, though in hindsight the starter chimney seems almost worth it (see Starting the Weber below) despite its lack of cool factor. Wal-Mart didn't seem to have regular starter fluid, only a gel-type variation, so I bought a package of the Zip-brand starters: white, flammable cube-shaped substances wrapped in what looks like plastic. Again, less cool factor than fluid, but easy to use for now.

73881_3a_1.jpg The only basting brushes I could find at the Bay were unsightly silicon-bristled versions, or else ungainly large and expensive. It seemed only the pastry brushes had that beige, natural-looking bristle quality. The higher-end Henckels pastry brush was only .5" wide, while the OXO mid-range model seemed appropriate, despite the lack of a "basting" label.

Starting the Weber:

I have now operated the Weber grill three times. This is the process I have developed for starting it so far:

  1. Pour approx. 30 (for small meals, i.e. 1 or 2 steaks) to 40 charcoal briquettes directly from bag onto bottom grill of Weber. Arrange briquettes in two pyramid-shaped piles. Centre of each pyramid should contain one starter cube. Arranging charcoal into even, stable structures is challenging.
  2. Make sure Weber's bottom, three-fanned vent is fully open. This helps feed oxygen to the starters. In a windless area (difficult on my blustery hilltop deck), ignite one extra-long wood match and light both ends of starters in both pyramids. Monitor starters for a couple minutes to ensure they flame up, do not blow out or otherwise die. After a few minutes starters should be fully engulfed in flame that may shoot 5 or 6 inches high.
  3. At this point I have experimented with keeping the starters flammable enough to kindle the briquettes, while also trying to heat the grill as a whole. In very windy situations I have had the starters go out, even after a few minutes of flame. I also placed the cover (its vent always open) on the Weber too early once, and this seemed to starve the cubes of oxygen. I found that once I get the starters fully going, I still leave the lid off for at least 10 minutes until a majority of the briquettes are glowing red in the areas immediately nearest the starters, as well as acquiring a light-gray film. Small flames are usually still visible from the nearly consumed starters, and after another 5 or 10 minutes the starters are spent and most of the surrounding briquette surfaces are gray in at least part.
  4. With tongs, dismantle pyramids and spread briquettes evenly over lower grill. Put upper grill in place, cover entire unit with lid, again ensuring both its and main body's vents are fully open. In 10 minutes (a total of 20-25 minutes of starting time) my Weber seems ready to accept its offerings. The temperature is usually hot enough that I cannot hold my hand near the upper grill for more than a few seconds.

Cooking on the Weber:

My first meal on the Webber was 1 steak. The second consisted of 2 steaks, 6 veggie kebabs, and 1 sausage. The third outing totaled 2 salmon steaks, 1 blue marlin steak, 3 large ribs, 1 sausage, 6 veggie dogs, 12 veggie kebabs, 3 frozen chicken breasts, and 1 garlic clove. The food and the Weber easily fed a party of ten over a period of 2 hours.

During my first meal I was amazed at the speed and taste the Weber grill, or at least charcoal grilling in general, imparts. The 1"-thick steak was medium-done. I had spread one side of it in Bull's Eye Bold Original BBQ sauce after flipping it once half through. After approx. 15 minutes total cooking time the steak was very evenly cooked, barely charred and tasted amazing. The smoked quality was evident. In fact, a trail of smoke was constantly emanating from the lid vents of the Weber. When cooking with the Weber my shirt smells very strongly of charcoal smoke.

For my third and latest outing I cooked using about 35-40 briquettes. The large ribs took approx. 30 minutes to cook, sharing the grill-space at various points with the salmon and kebabs. Again, the meats all tasted excellent. I did notice an increase (an extra 5 minutes) in cooking time between pieces of rib that were near the perimeter of the Weber and those only a few inches closer to the center. The fish, I was told, was a little over-cooked; again, more a comment on my novice skills than the Weber itself. Kebabs (10" skewers with chunks of mushroom, tofu, green and red pepper and cherry tomatoes) took approx. 5 minutes. By the end of the 2-hour cooking portion of the evening the Weber's interior temperature, I would guess, was approx. 30-50% less than at the beginning of the evening; a majority of the briquettes were half their original size, or else completely crumbling and disintegrating. Next time, for such a large party, I will use more briquettes. 50 Kingsford-sized should completely cover the bottom grill.

Opinion of the Weber:

Pros:

  1. Looks cool, kind of classy and old school, almost cute in an R2D2 way
  2. Very light, easy to move. Not too big, not ostentatious in style or size. Easily fits into a hatchback or large trunk of a car; possibility to disassemble and store in original box if I move.
  3. Pretty good quality for its type.
  4. No gas: another cool factor, requires skill to operate, no propane tank to smell, lug around or refill. Better taste.
  5. 10-year warranty.
  6. Simple, elegant design and simple to use.

Cons:

  1. Kind of a bitch to assemble. Directions only included diagrams, no text. Although most of it was monkey-simple to assemble (a marketing point emphasized by Weber), some of it was too simple. Inserting the tripod legs at angles into the base of the unit, while two of the legs are already set in fixed positions at one end, attempts to defy physics by requiring both legs to be forced---without hammering or wiggling---into tight-fitting receptacles at initial angles that are mutually antagonistic. In short, I really had to grip those legs, struggle and twist and almost bend them into place for 10 minutes.
  2. Overpriced, some cheap construction: The legs are rather thin and flimsy aluminum as are the plastic wheels, which are held on their simple axles with primitive pressure-fitted caps, one of which came off under regular wheeling on its third use. All the handles and prongs for the grill are spot-welded, which I realize eliminates the need for rust-prone bolting, but also seem like the first areas that will go. Flimsy grease catcher.
  3. Some awkward design: The bottom vent fans scrape excessively on the unit's surface, as does the lid vent. Aluminum lid vent extremely hot during operation but with no insulated handle to turn it. Only one handle on one side of main body, thus awkward to lift unit over steps, especially when hot. Grease catcher held in place with primitive and ugly, curly pressure clips.

Overall:

Despite the increase hassle (longer start-up times, messier aftermath) I would recommend a charcoal grill over a gas one, and would recommend the Weber Silver model specifically. The smell of the real charcoal grilling is amazing, though it stays with your clothes and hair well after the meal is over. Charcoal grills are rather a pain to clean: the bottom fills with ash after every use and you have to empty it often (after every second use or so) or it blows over your food. Apparently Weber is known as a good brand. They've been around since the 50s, their website is OK, the warranty excellent. It seams rather overpriced for its quality and simplicity, though for non-gas grills in this size range it is probably worth the exponential cost increase for something twice as good.

Questions Remain:

81 comments on Weber Charcoal BBQ Grill review

1. Jeff's worst nightmare | June 2, 2004 8:56 PM

I give the Weber a thumbs up. It performed admirably at the "third try". B. the b. Jeff another friend of mine is bbqing on friday night if you can stomach another grilled meal. -R

2. TT | July 9, 2004 10:12 AM

Recently got the 18.5" one-touch Gold model. Makes ash cleanup a breeze since it neatly deposits the junk in a small pot that can be easily removed and dumped. Also comes with a cooking grate that hinges on both sides so you can add extra charcoal if you're doing indirect cooking for a long time and need to replenish the coals without having to remove the food that's cooking in the middle of the grate. Highly recommended.

3. Frank Rizzo | August 6, 2004 8:51 AM

Good review, Weber rocks!!! However, a chimney starter for charcoals is anything but a "superfluous accessory", but rather the wisest accessory you could possibly invest in! Using chemical cubes or petroleum-based starter fluids that you'll continuously have to keep buying and comprimise taste with are what any pro barbequer would consider superflous though. The chimney will have all your charcoals glowing perfectly and ready to go within 10-15 minutes. And if you're slow cooking for more than an hour, you can get another batch ready in the chimney ahead of time before the first one peters out. You don't want to add more charcoals to the barbeque as an alternative, because when they first start up they give off plenty of acidic smoke which is not good for your food.

4. Jeff Werner | August 6, 2004 9:08 AM

Thanks for the advice. Yes, I like my Weber more all the time and definitely appreciate charcoal grilling now (after about 15 BBQs this summer). And you're right, a starter chimney must be the way to go. I need to get away from the chemical starters (ruined one meal with them already) or even the "all natural" starters which just don't work well. And good tip on not adding fresh, acidic-burning charcoal to currently-cooking food.

5. scotty Kearns | April 26, 2005 5:01 PM

I am in dire need of a charcoal chimney. I checked Rona, Home Hardware, Canadian Tire and The Home Depot ... no luck. Where can I get one online or in Toronto?

6. Dennis Lee | May 1, 2005 6:41 PM

Hey Scotty, I saw a chimney starter at Sobie's. It's a bbq supply place in Toronto just north of Sheppard on Willowdale. It's not much to look at but it'll do the job. I'm probably going to buy one myself later this week.

7. Val | May 11, 2005 8:45 PM

Wow the best review I have read in a long time...I too love charcoal bbq's...any type/brand will do with me as long as it is slowly cooked and smoked with that charcoal taste. I also love to use cedar when I bbq. Try it, you will be amazed at the taste. Thanx again for the great review!
Take care! :0)

8. Ryan | June 4, 2005 12:17 PM

I am in need of help... I need to buy a grill should it be gas or char. please advise..

9. Jeff Werner | June 4, 2005 9:59 PM

Charcoal, Ryan. See above for reasons why.

10. Charcoal Guy | June 10, 2005 11:01 AM

I've used a weber for many years. I use the
indirect method for everything from turkeys to burgers. It's fantastic allowing great control with low risk of burning or drying out. It takes the stress out of BarBQing.

11. Mike Cantrell | June 30, 2005 5:13 PM

I have used Weber Grill's exclusively for over 26 years. They are by far the best grills out there, unfortunately they have cheaped out the design over the years. DO NOT expect it to last through the 10 year warranty, I am on my 2nd Silver Series 22.5" grill in 3 years. Used to be they lasted at least 5 years before you had to worry about replacing them. The one handle on the kettle is one of the worst NEW features, as well as the kettle them selves being made of thinner metal. And plastic handles are the pits, used to be they were all made of Hardwood, and you actually had 2 on the kettle. Your spot welds on handles and the vent pivots are Extremely prone to rusting out becoming Unable to use the vents, hopefully yours will stick open as with them shut it is toast. I have cooked Whole stuffed turkeys as well as the gamut of other delicacies. The legs where never made of tougher stuff than they are now, as you mentioned they are a little flimsy so you have to be careful when inserting them. Also you used to get a grilling grate with flip up sides for adding charcoal to the fire as you cook. They have quit putting those on, unless you buy the more expensive Gold Series, you have to buy the grate with the flip up sides seperately. Kingsford, or other Briquettes are OK but I prefer to use 100% Mesquite Charcoal. Tastes better, cooks quicker (It is a hotter flame than regular charcoal) and is not in briquette form (Charred wood chunks). There is a company here in California called Two Trees Food Service Division 1-888-278-6978 that makes 100% Natural Mesquite Charcoal, called "BEST OF THE WEST". I know you are in Canada but you may be able to find a source of the same product over there, or something similar. An eletric starter will work ok, the chimney starter is a good choice for briquettes. There are only 2 (Kingsford and Wizard) liquid firestarters that are any good as they burn off cleanly and leave no taste on your food. It only takes about 10 minutes to get it going good enough to cover. I have also found that after the coals get going the best thing to do is cover it and wait another 10 minutes or so before cooking, this allows the temp to regulate inside the grill for more even cooking. Also you can regulate the heat with the top vent only. ALWAYS leave your bottom vents fully open when cooking to allow for air to feed the coals and Always cook with your lid on (prevents flare ups). Enjoy your Weber, I do. Even though they are not built like they used to be they are by far the best charcoal grill out there.

12. zeke | July 3, 2005 11:27 PM

I googled for Sobie's and they're not online.

Just in case someone knows of a canadian store that carries chimney starters, could you share it here?

I have one that I brought back from a camping trip to the US but I've been looking for one for my brother-in-law online and have had any luck.
All the ones ive seen on the US sites like barbecue.com dont ship to Canada.

Thanks

zeke

13. Tupac | July 8, 2005 10:07 AM

Guys:

Make your own Charcoal Chimney for under CA $ 10.

- Go to Rona and pick up some chimney pipe ($5). You pick the Diameter.

- Cut to desired length.

- Drill 3/4 - 1 inch holes with 2-3 inch gap in between. (use a slow speed drill since it is a large diameter hole)

- Rivet the seam with steel rivets ($2) (absolute must for safety)

- Rivet on some sort of steel handle (I had some scrap steel lengths at home - use gloves to pick up when hot).

Mine does not have the bottom platform on which to put the coals. I put the chimney directly in my webber, put some newspaper at the bottom, load up a bit of coal and ignite. When it gets going a bit, I scoop in the rest of the charcoal. When its all ready (about 10 minutes), I just slowly lift up the chimney while also moving it side-to-side and the hot coals settle down on the grating in a sort of centre line like I like it.

I made mine bigger that the ones available at the stores. This way I can choose how much coal to light up.

14. Doug | July 14, 2005 3:08 PM

Charcoal chimney? Take a large coffee can, remove both ends. Fill with charcoal and use a propane torch to ignite...get the "click to ignite" type. Cheap, no problems with nasty, toxic taste plus...instead of pissing away more money to Weber for an accessory...you get a useful tool out of the deal in the form of a torch! :)

15. bbq king of Kawartha Lakes | July 15, 2005 7:11 AM

charcoal chimney.... just go to ontario gas bbq in concord and buy the webber for 30 bucks.
look profesional when you bbq not like a yoakle tail gater.

16. Anonymous | July 29, 2005 3:55 PM

Anyone know where one can find lump charcoal in Ontario? Briquettes make too much ash and burn too cool for proper roasting and grilling.

17. Mark | August 27, 2005 8:37 AM

TO ZEKE,
Try www.sobies.com. You will find chimneys and lots of other great grilling and smoking accessories.
162 Willowdale Ave
Toronto, M2N 4Y6
416-224-2526

18. Sunil | August 30, 2005 1:54 AM

Dear Sir,

Coconut shell charcoal Barbecue Briquettes (CBB)

Aken Company (Pvt) Ltd in Sri Lanka is an export house mainly involved in export of spices and dehydrated products, especially to the Europe and Japan. The company has been a major player in this field for last 30 years.

We are involved in production and export of fresh fish and industrial tyre as well through the Global Industries Groups of Companies (www.amaseuro.com), which is our extended family group.

As to diversify, we are now into the production of Coconut shell charcoal Barbecue Briquettes (CBB) made from the coconut shell, which is carbonized and then compressed in to solid, angular briquettes (50x 40mm) or extruded cylinders (65 x 70mm).

In comparison to coal, wood or other charcoal products CBB has its unique superior qualities. It is 100% organic, environment friendly, burns longer (3.5 – 4 hrs), reusable, produces a higher degree of heat ( 6600 – 7250 Kcal/kg), no unpleasant fumes, no toxic gases, little smoke, no unnecessary clinker or slag formation. And so it gives a safe economical fire, suitable for both indoor and outdoor use.

We do customized packing and shipping in pallet form – 12 MT in a 20ft container.

We are very much keen to cooperate with reliable customers in order to build up a long term business relationship for the mutual benefit. We are very much glad to hear from you and to supply you with more details and free samples if and when required.

Thanking You
Yours Faithfully

Anosha Subasinghe (Mrs.)
Director

Aken Company (Pvt.) Ltd
127, W.A.D. Ramanayake Mawatha
Colombo 2, Sri Lanka.
Tel: 0094 11 2343469 / 2330929 / 2303840 - 1
Fax: 0094 11 2314872 / 2303842
Email: aken@sltnet.lk
Web : www.akencompany.com

19. Rob | September 30, 2005 10:57 PM

Can some one give me advise on how to cook a roast properly in a Webber

20. Glen Hawkins | November 1, 2005 4:54 AM

We are manufacturers of instant light lumpwood charcoal in South Africa.
Instant light lump charcoal is made from hardwood which has been carbonised into charcoal. The charcoal is then graded into various sizes. The selected grade is then subjected to treatment which guarantees its lighting ability with a single match.
No mess, and with just one match you can start a bbq which doesn't smoke or smell. It’s never been easier. Our treatment doesn't involve the use of solvents or alcohols - so no evaporation of the lighting medium takes place.
Our product has an indefinite shelf life even after being opened.
We offer various packing configurations and a disposable bbq grill.

Our web site is www.tropicalcharcoal.co.za .

We currently contract pack and export our product under stringent quality conditions for the major retail stores in the UK, namely Tesco, Sainsbury, B&Q, Asda and Wickes.
All our product is exported. We are also able to offer OEM branded packaging.

We are looking to export into the USA.
If you feel that there is potential for this product which is growing 20% per annum in the UK, please don't hesitate to contact us.

21. Chris | December 19, 2005 10:46 PM

Where in British Columbia, Canada can you buy a good...and I mean a $500 to $800 dollar Weber Gas Grill with a side burner. Some where close to Vancouver preferred. Besides Home Depot. Any suggestions? Please let me know so I can start grilling!!!! Thanks

Cheers,

Chris

22. Jerry | December 21, 2005 4:05 PM

Hi Jeff,

Wise purchase of the Weber kettle. I've got a 22.5" one myself and love it. Just thought I'd let you know that you don't need to use that Kingsford garbage. Maple Leaf, a company out of Quebec, has both lump hardwood charcoal and briquettes. The briquettes do not contain any chemicals, only hardwood and a binder derived from wheat. I use the briquettes for smoking and the lump for grilling. Really good stuff, and they love it down in the states (see review at this link, you may have found this while researching the barbecue purchase).
http://www.nakedwhiz.com/lumpdatabase/lumpbag3.htm
I've been able to find it at Rona stores here in Edmonton and would like to encourage more people to buy it so that they continue to stock it. Specialty bbq stores have it as well but for twice the price.
Hope you've managed to gain some good experience with the kettle over the last year or so. I've done a number of different kinds of meat on mine and it's really hard to beat the pulled pork. At the risk of sounding like a bbq nerd, Steven Raichlen has a book called How To Grill that's very good for aspiring grill jockeys. He's also a big proponent of charcoal over gas.

23. Tony | March 20, 2006 2:31 PM

I gave away my gas grills and went charcoal. I went too cheap though, as I just wanted to get my feet wet before buying a good one (probably a Big Green Egg). You can buy lump charcoal anywhere in southern Ontario- Canadian Tire, Loeb, A&P, Loblaws, IGA, etc. Look for Royal Oak. It's good stuff, and reasonably priced too.

As for chimney starters, I believe I picked mine up at Walmart for $10-15. I used to make small hand fires to start the coal. While fun, they took too long and were too labor intensive, particularly on windy days!

Honestly, it's not hard to find good (lump) charcoal grilling accessories in Canada. At least, not in Ottawa, Kingston, Toronto, Hamilton, and Niagara- so ditch the gas and get with the lump!

24. Darcy | March 25, 2006 10:51 AM

I was given a gold model which is a little larger. If you have a back yard you will appreciate the larger size which is great for cooking for around 10 people max. The cost of charcoal is quite a bit more than propane but if I am dropping $20 + on steak what's an extra $1 for charcoal - the taste is superior.

Buy the chimney. I've had mine for at least 3 years and it will last 10 if I keep it inside away from the moisture. It makes the use of the charcoal painless. Fill it up put a couple of pieces of newspaper under it and then come back in 20 minutes and you are ready to go. Each and every piece of charcoal will be red hot and perfect for cooking.

The lighter fluids and cubes leave a taste of chemicals. They are also expensive. I would guess they add around $1 to each use and they do not light the whole pile evenly. This is a frustration when only the center of the pile is hot and you have uneven cooking temperatures.

I still use the gas grill when I'm in a hurry or its miserable weather but I always wish I could have used the Weber.

25. Freezy ( Ont) | March 26, 2006 3:24 PM

ok guys im ordering the gold model soon as i finnish this post. Iv been using a pit on the ground for about 5 yrs and decided it was time to stop bbqing on my knees. Did alot of looking around and Weber is the only co that makes a half decent quality char-grill.
I recommend to everyone to experiment with wood chips for smoking even if just cooking a steak .
Mix different types together like apple and Hickory or Cherry and Apple chips , also use Wine or beer to soak the wood chips for an hour , the flavour is amazing.
Anyway i will repost after i get and use my new Weber in the near future .

Freezy.

26. Leslie | April 11, 2006 10:21 AM

I was given a Weber One-Touch BBQ last fall and it needs a 22.5" hinged replacement grill real bad. I cannot find one available near Ottawa or Kingston. I live in Kemptville and want to know if anyone knows of a place where Weber replacement stuff is sold near me.

Thanks in advance.
Leslie

27. GIWA TAIWO | April 12, 2006 11:10 AM

I hereby state to you our grade of charcoal materials . 1. OUR GRADE OF CHARCOAL (;a) Unprocess and processed,( b), Restaurant grade,( c) Barbecue grade, (d) Fine charcoal. 2. RANDOM WEIGHT: (a) Fine charcoal ( 5mm-15mm) ( B) . Barbecue grade (20mm - 80mm) c, Restaurant grade (70mm - 120) and above. 3.STATE OF MATERIALS: Free from stones, strings, sand, well graded dried free from foreign matters and non - contaminants. 4. METHOD OF PACKAGING: Aready packed BBQ grade 3kg, 5kg , 10kg, 11 - 12 kg, and 15kg, with paper / polypropylene bags. (c,) Restaurants/ BBQ grade can be packed in fairly / new polypropylene sacks and the quotation differ, we can print on your company logo and address on your bags. 5. OUR CHARCOAL ANALYSIS ARE AS FOLLOWS:( a) Carbon contents= 82.53% - 87.10%, ( b,) Moisture content = 3.50% in dry season and 8.12% - 10.00% in raining season.( c) Volatile contents = 0.95% - 8.89%, d Ash content = 3.30% - 5.70%, all varies. 6. As regard price, honestly, i must tell you the fact that we currently supply to two companies in piraeus Greece at the moment, at the rate of FOB euro 180 for RESTAURANT GRADE PACKED IN 25KG. AND euro 200 for 15kg. packed in new polypropylene bags, and fairly used bags respectively. Also please note we have this goods in abundance at the moment because we are in dry season. Samples can be send to you if required before supply. In your reply, let us know the following. 1.The number of containers you can buy from us every month. The grades of charcoal you want. The best price you can offer, Your mode of payment. Looking forward to hear from you very soon. Thanks and best regards. MR GEORGE OBASEKI commercial manager

28. kev | April 21, 2006 4:43 PM

Leslie - try Capital Appliance & BBQ in Ottawa. They're a great BBQ/Smoker/grilling shop.

bbqing.com

kev

29. nick diller | April 22, 2006 7:08 AM

I just want to comment on the use of Weber Charcoal grills. I've used them for 35 years and I've found that they are an extremely versatile cooker.
.direct with one or two zones, (hot and not so hot) with lid off or on.
.indirect with the lid on for meats thicker than your hand's thickness.
.rotisseri-indirect which Weber has.
.live fire..food directly on the coals
.barbecue..with the fire on one side over the leg
and vents closed half way to keep the temperatures at about 225 to 250 degrees for long-and-slow cooking.
alswo for easier clean-up use a 12" pizza pan under the charcoal rack to catch most of the ashes. Make sure you bend dit a little so as not to impede airflow.
I find if you keep these kettle grills clean and undercover when not in use, you should never have to buy another grill. theyd are light and well made and your cooking options are many.
I have 3 grills in excellent condition from the 1950s (it says patent pending) and the 1960s
Good luck with yours


30. nik | April 29, 2006 4:42 PM

To Leslie, on-line Canadian source, bbqs.com
The store is in Concord, Ont. Prices seems to be reasonable.

31. John | May 1, 2006 8:46 PM

You crazy Canadians ever hear of shopping online. You can get stuff shipped right to your door step

32. Josh | June 4, 2006 9:37 PM

Hi John, I've been looking online for somewhere to buy the weber but can't find anything decent. Any suggestions??

33. Gary | June 13, 2006 5:17 AM

Would people consider the Gold worth the extra over the silver or should I keep me money in my pocket

34. Eric | June 17, 2006 11:44 AM

I have recently bought a Weber Kettle BBQ. When BBQ with the lid on shoould the vent on the top lid be open or closed? Does the top vent control the temperature?

35. Jeff Werner | June 17, 2006 3:02 PM

Eric, as I understand it yes, the top vent controls temperature (as do the bottom vents). If you're slow-cooking something (say for three hours) you close the vents almost fully, thus cutting off air to the coals so they burn at a lower temperature. The air then circulates around the BBQ and your food rather than passing through.

Open the vents and you'll get more air to the coals, thus more heat and faster cooking.

I generally cook with both bottom and top vents wide open, which will do a couple large steaks in 10 minutes. When I'm done cooking I close both vents completely, which basically shuts the BBQ down and saves the coals for next time.

36. TSD Global Trading Co.,Ltd | June 17, 2006 6:47 PM

Dear Sirs

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37. Hiroaki | June 20, 2006 11:34 PM

I bought a 14" Smokey Joe, I liked the product, athought it was much smaller than I thought, and the stand is bulky.
In fact, it was a perfect size for small group of 2 or 3 ppl, and fit into my balcony.
I bought a chimney starter for 15 dollers + tax at Sobie's, it is worth it.
When I was at my home back in Japan, I wouldn't know the existence of a charcoal chimney, It is very rare and not known, even tho Japanese makes so many grill dishes (just not in american style).
I used to burned news paper, put small wood sticks, then a bit larger ones, putting the coals on its side, thus starting the fire.
Now I have the chimney, what I do is, put just one paper from a newspaper, then pour in charcoals, light on the bottom with my zippo, and start cutting the vegitables. In ten minutes, its all sizzling in white red colors, ready to be put on the grill. It's efficiency and easiness are almost amazing.

The problem I had was with closing the lid. If I close the lid, even if the vents are all open, in ten minutes or so the coals are almost put out...
So if I put, for example, steaks on the grill, maybe a stainless cup with water for the steam, put the lid, then the coal is blackened down after 10 mins when I want to heat up my veggies...
The vents seems not to be enough because it is 14?
Or is it the timing of opening the lid?
Maybe I closed the lid for too long?
Hmm, this requires a good experience then...

38. strcpy | September 1, 2006 1:11 AM

Long running post - still high on a Google search.

Anyway I will reiterate a few things - go chunk charcoal if you can. Signifigantly less ash, stronger charcoal flavor, and a hotter (though shorter) burn. Charcoal Chimneys are great. I use a combination of balled up paper with a little lighter fluid on it. The lighter fluid doesn't flavor the coals when used that way, though I will also use denatured alchohol also. Denatured alchohol lights better but costs more.

I use a grill made by a local company. It's about the same price as a weber and just has a different list of pro's and cons's. To me, the company being local is nice so I stick with it. I've been thinking of tinkering with other grills so I was looking at a weber.

One thing that is not mentioned above - and this is true for chunk charcoal or briquettes - use a hair dryer for HIGH heat. I like steaks that are charred on the surface and very rare in the middle. For any type of food this can work - it can make some really interesting textures on some vegetarian dishes, though some taste horrid this way. It is also useful as a finish if you want a more charred surface. I can produce signifigantly more heat than any other grill with a hair dryer blowing on the coals. The only thing to watch for is that you can blow ash around. If I'm doing a mix I cook the "normal" meat until time to put the spurs to it. I then remove all the meat and use the blower to blow all the ash I can, place the already cooked meat around the edge and the raw meat as direct over the ashes as I can. I then blow directly on the ashes - it will get REALLY hot (unless I wear gloves it burns my fingers even several feet away).

For people like me who like very rare steaks and a charred/charcoal flavor this is *extremely* good. For others - it's worth a try if you want more heat at any point. I also use the blow dryer to maintain a more constant heat for indirect cooking for longer periods of time. It tends to burn the coals up faster but I get better results.

39. phil rosen | September 9, 2006 5:46 PM

Sep 9/06
My propane bbq died last week, I looked at it and we did not want to spend a smal fortune on a new one, since friends of ours use a Weber with real briquettes.
Bought the briquettes,a nd tried staks using our old propane bbq.
Followed the bbq instructions for 1 layer of briquettes, but the heat wasn't high enough to sear the steaks, but other than that the meal wasa successs.
Next time I will try double the briquettes.

40. Spencer | December 2, 2006 12:21 PM

There are pros and cons to both charcoal and gas. I have both and use both for different purposes - gas or propane, offer you a much greater degree of heat control, more space for indirect cooking and a heck of a lot easier start up and clean up. I use it 2-3 times a week after work or for a quick meal. Charcoal takes longer to set up your meal and a little longer to clean up. But, it has a distinct flavour and a more natural grilling experience. Because of the time factor, I use that primarily on the weekends. When hosting parties, I use both. :) Both my grills are Weber and both are of excellent quality and it's a joy using either.

41. John Hofmeyr | January 20, 2007 11:44 AM

Back in Aug '04, Frank Rizzo wrote "You don't want to add more charcoals to the barbeque as an alternative, because when they first start up they give off plenty of acidic smoke which is not good for your food".

Also, on 1 Sept '06 strcpy wrote "- go chunk charcoal if you can. Significantly less ash, stronger charcoal flavor, and a hotter (though shorter) burn."

Here are some ideas: "Bio-Charcoal Briquettes 101"

I'm interested to offer smokeless & odourless bio-charcoal briquettes to Weber. So these give the same performance as lump-wood charcoal but without the "acidic smoke" which Frank correctly referred to for normal briquettes, and also without the excessive ash which strcpy referred to. There's more commentary about ash and clay binder below).

These bio-charcoal briquettes will give at least the same burn-time as lump-wood charcoal. (With these special briquettes there's no problem with adding some more briquettes during cooking, because they ignite and burn smokeless & odourless. (But the temperature drops while the existing briquettes are igniting the new ones, so don't let the glow go too low).
These briquettes have a high "fixed carbon" content and correctly-limited percentage of
"volatiles". Volatiles are natural components of bio-charcoal which are required to get the briquettes glowing. (I don't like the "instant-light" type of charcoal or briquettes which include a chemical flaming agent to get it ignited). But too much residual volatiles in the charcoal and you waste energy. This happens because you get excessive smoke and/or flame during ignition. Remember - you paid for this energy, and you want to use the heat for cooking, not flaming! You will get this with high-fixed-carbon biocharcoal briquettes. I recommend at least 80% fixed carbon, preferably above 83%. Normal charcoal briquettes can be as low as 60% fixed carbon, with lots of ash and volatiles.

If the normal briquettes have got lots of ash or clay binder mixed in with the charcoal, you need to waste more energy from volatiles to get them glowing). I recomment only a premium corn-starch binder to form the briquettes. Natural is best.

So that's also a very long response to Jeff's short question at the end of the original review: "Is it worth it to buy “better”, more expensive charcoal?"
The answers:
Better: YES.
More expensive: NOT NECESSARILY.

And now you know what to ask the supplier about "fixed carbon percentage", "volatiles percentage" and ash percentage.

Charcoal briquettes have a normal moisture content of about 6%. This absorbed from the atmosphere. Can't avoid this; it's natural. If we adjust for the moisture content, and calculate the other components of good quality bio-charcoal briquettes on a "DRY BASIS" (this is how manufacturers calculate it anyway), you could look for briquettes as follows:
Volatiles: about 12-15%.
Ash: lower than 2-3%.
Fixed Carbon: about 84%.

End of course "Bio-Charcoal Briquettes 101"

42. SYLVESTER POWELL | March 13, 2007 4:30 AM

I AM AN INDUSTRIALIST CONCERNED WITH THE PRODUCTION OF CHARCOAL ,WE ARE SEARCHING FOR INDIVIDUALS /INDUSTRIES INTRESTED IN THE PURPCHASE.

43. BigFish | April 29, 2007 3:10 PM

I find the charcoal grills and especially the Weber to create a better "grilling experience". This is due to the fact that the grill gets hotter than most (not all) gas grills. The higher temp combined with the charcoal gives meat a quick cook on the outside, sealing in juices. The best advice I can give to someone grilling is that it is best not to flip your meat excessively when cooking, since the rotation and squeezing of the meat will give you dry tasteless meat commonly referred to as "hockey pucks" or "shoeleather".

44. Randolph | May 4, 2007 1:56 PM

One thing that may help the outdoor cooking world in this country [Canada] is to mentally separate the two ideas of BBQ'ng and Grilling.

You can do both with either system, but a Grill is best at Grilling and a 'Q is best at Barbecuing.

I don't bother grilling because I can duplicate the concept in the kitchen with a cast-iron grill pan. Economically, it's the winner. No external machine, no hazardous propane tank, etc.

Boring, though, and lacks the opportunity for outdoor socialization.

Barbecuing, on the other hand, is an art form. I learned whilst living in Texas, Alabama, California and Mexico for the past 20 years.

You need patience, but with that and some skill, you're in for a happy time.

Chimneys are, in my experience, the best method of firing up. I've used starters and fluids and detest them for different reasons. Some of which are simply convenience - the chimney never runs out of, well, chimney-ness. But if you rely on starters or fluids, you can run out and then you're scrabbling for newspapers or some such rot.

If you are going to grill - directly over the heat - keep handy either a half-glass of wine or a half-empty bottle of beer. When you flip something [as BigFish suggests, do it less often than you might think] the top with be seared and dry. Sprinkle liberally the fluids - as the meat 'rests' it'll suck up that beer/wine and stay moist.

I don't personally go for the round 'kettle' style because I often cook unrelated food types at the same time and enjoy a longer, rectangular cooking surface.

Experiment with 'off-side' heat - in any 'Q - and have the coals at one end and the food at the other. Takes longer, but the 'smoke' will permeate more thoroughly.

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46. joe | May 13, 2007 5:10 PM

I must say ... nothing better than grilling on charcoal. I own a Weber Performa with a 22in kettle. I used to start my grill with gas burner integrated into grill. Now I use a chimney. Fires up justr as fast and i get to recycle my paper charcoal bag. The coals fir u right an really produces good heat in the keytlle for all variety of foods. Kebabs to 20 lb pork butts! I took me 5 hrds to cook that pork butt but it was the juciest and tastiest piece of meat anyone ever ate. Just needed to go back to the grill and add more coals every 45 min. Clean up is a snap by just dumping out the ash bin a the bottom. Once everything has had a chance to cool down!!!

Wouldn't trade it fir anything Have had it for 8 years and nothing broken on it. Really sturdy quality. Cleans up great too with the stainless steel top. wonder how the new plastic table tops are. Can anyone tell me?

I also own a Bby Q that I use for family outings.

I am looking to get a wok 22 in for this unit. Anyone know where in Canada I can get one?

Thx

Just one complaint: Weber needs to make a smoker extension ring to fit between the cover and the kettle so to use it as a Weber smoker too !

47. red | May 29, 2007 10:04 AM

NOOB
Get a chimney and if u want real Q
Get a smokey mountain cooker

48. Gerry | June 14, 2007 11:46 AM

I have had my 22 1/2 Weber kettle since 1972, that is 35 years old. It still preforms to perfection. I have replaced the grates a couple of times but over all it has hardly any wear showing. I use it for everything from Hamburgers, Steaks, Chops, Fish and Poultry. Also use it as a smoker for Ribs, no problem at all. 6 Years ago I purchased a Weber Silver Gensis Gas Grill and love it as well, but the old Charcol Weber is still unbeatable. Oh by the way buy a chimney starter, the only way to go. Weber is the beast by far.

49. Ms Dirus | June 15, 2007 10:26 AM

EASY HOMEMADE CHARCOAL FIRE STSRTERS: Boy Scout campouts TEACH making rustic CHIMNEY STARTERS. DIRECTIONS: Empty & Clean #10 can ie, LG coffee can(s);fill with Matchlight charcoal & light.. Hint: 2 coffee cans will fit in bottom of Lg Weber. Long lasting coals feed several guests or smokes 20#/ie Lg Turkey.Use tongs to remove cans, gently shaking/spreading coals to cover grill.

50. Michelle | June 17, 2007 4:28 PM

I just wanted to say THANK YOU for the fantastic start to finish review. I have the exact same BBQ, and have forgotten how to get it started; found this blog, and it got me going, start to finish! Thanks! Sometimes I put a tiny bit of starter fluid on my briquettes rather than the chimney, as I found that the bricks in the chimney went out too often. I gotta love it ... a fantastic grill ... even though mine is the older model, not the new One Touch one!

51. Karin Wyman | June 19, 2007 10:43 AM

Hi,

One of my neighbours gave me their Weber bar b q. It needs a new handle. Other than that it works perfect. Best bar b q I ever owned. Beats the hibachi. The coals were amber within 5 minutes without using any kind of starter. I like this guy's method of bar b queing.
http://bbq.netrelief.com/tips/how_to_cook_bbq_ribs_on_a_weber_gill.shtml

Karin Wyman

52. Karin Wyman | June 19, 2007 10:44 AM

Hi,

One of my neighbours gave me their Weber bar b q. It needs a new handle. Other than that it works perfect. Best bar b q I ever owned. Beats the hibachi. The coals were amber within 5 minutes without using any kind of starter. I like this guy's method of bar b queing.
http://bbq.netrelief.com/tips/how_to_cook_bbq_ribs_on_a_weber_gill.shtml

Karin Wyman

53. Tom | June 24, 2007 3:48 PM

A charcoal chimney is the only way to go! Crumple up a piece of newspaper and a put a little lighting fluid on it. I have used the hardwood charcoal in the past but found once it was lit it would fall between the grates.

54. Steve | July 9, 2007 6:58 PM

I am a a BBQ fanatic. I just love BBQing. I BBQ with my Weber in the rain. I have had two good gas grills and after a few years of it went back to the old Weber kettle. You simply cant beat it for taste..peroid. The pros use real wood or charcoal for a reason. If I ever buy anything else its going to be one of those Texas type barrel jobs. We went back to New Mexico two years ago and the guys there drive out of town find an old dead mesquite tree and fill up the truck with a chain saw. I love my Weber and I used the frist one so long I melted the bottom grate into a sagging curve and found the cure by reversing it and remelting it straight over time....indestructible and good tasteing food. Yeah Weber with charcoal and some wet hickory chips ontop...you cant beat it.

55. Mike in Florida USA | August 23, 2007 6:17 PM

Hello,
I purchased the Weber One Touch Silver 22.5" at Target for $84.99. It took me about 15 mins to build the grill. My Mom told me to pick out ANY BBQ grill and she would buy it for me (birthday gift). I looked at 10+ charcoal grills and I picked out this one (she thought I was crazy) !! "Out of all the grills out there why do you want this chubby little kettle". I could have purchased a $500 deluxe charcoal grill - but this was the one for me. My first BBQ was perfect!! I cooked 1" Beef Steaks (marinated with Weber steak seasoning) :)
The steaks came out perfect - really the best steak I've ever had in my whole life !!! Since I saved my Mom so much money, I did purchase some Weber accessories :)
Here's what I bought:
* Weber Silver One Touch $84.99 (Target)
* Weber Chimney $12.99 (Home Depot)
* Weber Tool Holder $3.99 (Target)
* Weber Salt Pepper Shakers $5.99 (Target)
* Weber Grill Cover - $6.99 (Target)
* Weber Hinged Cooking Grate - $16.99 (Target)
* Weber Seasoning $3.99 (Publix)

One thing I haven't figured out ... whats the best way to clean the ashes? I used the one-touch handle to move the ashes to the silver pan. Now whats the best way to clean that? Should it be removed and cleaned? Should I just scope the ashes to a garbage bag?? Please help.

Our and here is my steak recipe ...
Place a checkered board cuts on both side of the steak with a sharp knife but not too deep (you still want the steak in 1 piece). This will allow it to easily absorb the marinate :)
1.Rinse the steak under water.
2.Place it on a plate.
3.Season both sides with Weber seasoning.
4.Place steak in 1 gallon zip lock bag.
5.Pour olive oil on both sides of the steak.
6.Pour white vinegar 2 oz. in the bag.
7.Pour water 4 oz. in the bag.
8.Marinate for 1 - 2 hrs.
9.For Medium rare - Cook for 8 mins on the weber ; turnover the steak at 4 mins.

Weber is #1 :-)

56. Cutesteffie | August 29, 2007 12:19 PM

I love Freezy's comments.

I too have used the Charcoal Weber. This is my first season BBQ'ing, and at age 36 not a moment too soon!

I got this Weber for $109 at some Hardware place and some basic tools for a total of about $175. A great investment.

Just a few weeks back, me and the girlfriend took off camping, loaded the Weber and had great potatoes and sausages in the middle of the woods.

As for the charcoal chimney, I bought two big ones. The most annoying thing is starting too few of them. So I light them both up and roar up the grill. LOL

It can be a b...ch to find Kingsford charcoal but it is the best. I recommend you get 4-5 bags at a time to avoid running all over town with your pants down trying to find it. Nothing compares to it.

Good grilling everyone!

57. RM | January 10, 2008 12:58 PM

Excellent review. I own 22 1/2 inch Weber charcoal gold with ash collector cotainer and it works great. Similarly I was disappointed in no insulation for lid vent. I almost burned my fingers first time operating the lid vent when grill was hot (should have been more careful).

Weber's customer service was outstanding. I got my grill and lid didn't fit tightly on the base so I called their customer service helpline. They asked me serial number on the lid and send me the replacement lid within a week.

58. mark | January 22, 2008 1:45 AM

Hello.i start with much Greetings to you and your whole company.Please accept my apologise if i have reached a wrong contact, my name is Mr.Larry mark.I came across your e-mail and noticed that you can provide me with Charcoal Grill for my new houes Center for there project work,and as such i urgently need them for my Value project.I will be glad to have a reply from you.So that i will provide you the details of my order...please we await your reply.
Regards.
Larry.

59. Sam | February 15, 2008 9:24 AM

To all who live in Toronto who are looking for a chimney starter you can find them and other Weber accessories at the Home Hardware at Eglington & Bayview. They also sell replacement parts and they are a Weber dealer. Hope this helps.
Sam

60. Mr.Paul Gilbert | March 4, 2008 3:18 AM

Hello
i am Mr.Paul Gilbert i want to order some of your(Weber Charcoal BBQ Grill) in your company what is the price of them also what type of payment do you accept.Thank you waiting for your email soon.
Regards
MR.Paul

61. Jerri | March 9, 2008 3:35 PM

I left a bag of charcoal outside and it got soak from the rain---Can I let it dry out--and then use it.

62. henry | March 14, 2008 4:48 AM

hello for all your charcoal supply from africa, you can contact henry by e-mail at
daivdsallbusiness@yahoo.com or by phone +2348055598702. thank ou

63. Christina | May 24, 2008 10:18 AM

I have recently moved have a west facing med sized patio, and am dieing to buy my first bbq. Cannot decide between charcoal or propane. Love a rare steak and have been lead to believe you can't cook a rare steak on propane because they don't get hot enough. I know the flavor of charcoal is much better but ease of clean up in an apartment is a concern. Have never used a bbq before and can't afford to spend a lot maybe $100-$200. I know it's a personal choice but since I am a virgin griller??
I am stuck and looking for advice. Also any tips or even cook book suggestions would be great! Thanks,

64. Karen | May 31, 2008 11:48 AM

Love It! The charcoal BBQ brings the act of BBQing back ito the whole thing. Propane is too convenient for the current generation. This is all great advice..I might add shopping around for a used one in good condition..they do exist. They are sturdy and cheaper, and you save one more usefull thing from the garbage dump!

Happy BBQing Everyone!

65. Carey | June 1, 2008 12:46 PM

Thanks for this Jeff. I just bought a Weber Gold 22.5" and into my third week of real charcoal bbqing, the kind my dad did when I was a kid. Still getting used to it, but I wouldn't trade it in for a gas grill at this point. I'd recommend it to anyone interested in grilling great food.

66. Bill | June 2, 2008 1:46 PM

I got a great chimney starter at the Atlantic Superstore...here in the east coast...don't know if they are out west or not

67. Lisa | June 2, 2008 1:51 PM

So the choice is made! Thanks for all the comments and praise for making my mind up! Question- when cooking a turkey, is a rotissere needed or can it be cooked indirectly. Any pointers?

68. onceachef | June 3, 2008 11:49 AM

yes, get a "charcoal chimney"...much better, faster, more efficient and less toxic than fuel starters.

69. Conrad | June 5, 2008 11:45 AM

I'm debating whether to get the One-Touch Silver or Gold. Is the Gold series really worth the extra money?

70. SabinaKatrina | June 5, 2008 11:57 AM

I live in Hamilton Ontario Canada. I am looking for a charcoal bbq and just saw Jamie Oliver's new chrome dome model - seems compact (can be carried with a lid), elegant, but I know nothing about flavour/durability/ash disposal.

Any comments re: this and where in the Hamilton area one can buy Weber bbqs and parts?

SabinaKatrina

71. Helen | June 8, 2008 9:56 AM

I have used the Webber Kettle 22 1/2" BBQ for several years. I only use lump charcoal. This is my second Webber kettle. The old one was donated to friends to use as a fire pit in their back yard when we bought a propane BBQ. When the propane BBQ needed replacement I went back to the Webber. Webber kettle BBQ with lump charcoal rocks !

72. gordon | June 8, 2008 10:45 AM

read all the comments with great interest. Learnt, for example, that both vents should be opened on starting up. I am in SW FRANCE and Weber is fairly new here and the instruction book not that good. My only concern on using, say, the Weber brickets is that I cannot reach a high heat even after 30 mins. I wonder what I'm doing wrong ? Can anyone advise me please? Gordon

73. Helen | June 11, 2008 7:24 AM

The stationary leg must be pointed into the directin of the breeze. If there is no breeze, the coals will not get very hot.

74. Ian | June 18, 2008 11:23 AM

I have the ranch kettle and the rocky mountain smoker, and the small rectangular protable weber (can't remember the name of it now), can't go wrong with these three. the ranch is the biggest weber charcoal bbq ever made over 1000 sq in and will run you $1200. I use it for large meals at family gatherings and I can use it for 2, just uses a little more coals. I've had 10 whole chickens on it and theres still room for all your potatos, veggies, corn etc, it's huge. The smoker is fantastic, I cook my turkey and ham on it at Christmas, smoke roasts, chicken and fish. Love that it will keep going for 10 hours with very little fuss and you cannot beat the flavor. I also have a weber gas grill, it collects dust. You just can't beat the taste of charcoal grills and the wood chips will bring you a whole new dimension of flavor, just soak them for 30-60 minutes and put them directly into the coals, just watch out for the neighbours trying to come around for a free meal because it smells wonderful. The chimney is a must ordered mine directly from weber, love the internet for shopping and I prefer the real wood briquettes over the wood lump charcoal. The lumps burn too hot and inconsistant. Remember it's not a race to cook the food faster the flavor is better when slowed cooked over indirect heat, if I am in a rush that when the gas one comes out, which is only used once or twice a year.

75. adrian leared | August 23, 2008 3:14 AM

Hi from Playa del Inglés in the Canary Islands. Can I grill on my Weber with the lid off? I'm having big arguments with my friends here. They say a you can't grill a steak with the lid on because it will boil it! Please advise one of you savvy americans or Canadians!

76. Jeff Werner | August 23, 2008 10:02 AM

Adrian: your friends are correct. Grill your steaks with the lid off. That's what grilling is all about: oxygen feeding the flames that cook your meats on first one side, flip, then the other. Lid on is like an oven: it will cook more evenly all around, but that's better for very slow roasting (6-8 hours) or secondary dishes like potatoes.

77. tina | September 1, 2008 10:17 PM

Dear Whom May It Concern,

I'm doing instant charcoal for Beijing famous factory, competition price and good quality, especially envirnmental, please see website:

www.starcharcoal.com

Appreciate to get your concern.

78. www.coalgrilling.com | October 16, 2008 6:34 AM

Great review Jeff! I have both a kettle style and a barrel style grill and I use the kettle (weber)style defiantly the most here in Denmark because I store it each time I'm finished and its easy to move around. Its also just a great all around grill for indirect and direct heat grilling. I use a Chimney style starter because its soooo easy, I was so happy once I bought it because it just works every time and wind isn't a problem with it. I use Charcoal briquettes and always read the label; I make sure that there is a proper content declaration and that the wood used is coming from a renewable resource and that the manufacturing and import process is CO2 neutral.

I have some tips and videos on my website: www.coalgrilling.com you are all welcome to view and comment on all the entries.

79. carlos alfieri | October 31, 2008 9:50 AM

Sir: I am producing of charcoal in the Argentine Republic, the coal is of exelente quality and price, my monthly production is of 1000 tons monthly if to you you interest to him are possible to be made shipments to any part of the world and in the package that you require.

80. Curt schuchman | November 19, 2008 10:49 AM

HI my name is curt schuchman from Fairfield Iowa.Weber grills are the BEST IN THE WORLD.I got my first one 27 years ago as a wedding gift and I still use it all the time.I have 4 webers now ,3 of them are 22.5 and 18.5.I dont give then any special care.I grill 2to3 times a week year round.I always have at least 2 grills going each time I grill, 1 for veggies and 1 for meat.This spring I added a 8 by 10 cement to my screened in patio to put my grills on so I would not get my feet muddy.I have a sign on post that says WEBER CITY. I go through about 800 lbs of charcole a year.I would not have it any other way.

81. Mike | February 10, 2009 6:44 PM

The 22 inch Weber one touch Silver has got to be the best investment on the grilling market bar none. You could spend over 300.00 dollars for a One Touch Gold, but the bottom line is, you still have a high quality 22 inch kettle for 4 times the price of the Silver model. After the proper experience has been obtained, the kettle has limitless potential for Grilling, Baking, or Smoking. The best part - It's very affordable and will last you many years with no maintenance costs. I've had mine for 5 years and cooked on it at nearly continuous rate throughout the year and it's still going strong..........

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